From the Collections of Harvard College Library, Events and Exhibitions 2014


Alice in Wonderland

Vicinity of Route 66 through Arizona from Sketch
of public surveys in New Mexico and Arizona,

The Ancestry of the Mother Road: Mapping Route 66
Route 66 looms large in American culture.  In song and story, the mother road carries us to the promise of a better life.  Traveling Route 66 is still the ultimate road trip even now as we pick our way along a road disrupted by the modern, looking for remnants of an earlier path.  Route 66 was years in the making as Americans sought the best path from the East to the West, and is being remade even today, as it continues to hold a special place in the imagination of travelers and wanderers of all kinds. Railroad scouts and surveyors, early auto adventurers, dust bowl migrants, suburban road-tripping families, all following their own paths, but all on the same road.

Corridor Gallery, Pusey Library


Alice in Wonderland

Proof plates for “The Jury Box,” 1889. 21472.14.9.
Gift of Mrs. Harcourt Amory, 1927.

Such a curious dream!
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland at 150

This exhibition will feature unique, colorful and curious Carrolliana from the early 1860s to the present. Drawn largely from the fabulous collection compiled by Harvard alumnus Harcourt Amory, the exhibition will include original drawings by illustrator John Tenniel, foreign editions of the book, parodies, theatrical works and ephemera. Not to be missed: Alice Liddell’s own copy of the suppressed first edition.

If you cannot make it to Houghton to view the exhibition you can browse the collection via an accompanying website filled with animations and interactive features. Virtual visitors can zoom in on photos and texts and flip through Alice Liddell’s copy of the book.

Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library


Alice in Wonderland

T.S. Eliot in the Harvard 1910 Class Album.
Courtesy Harvard University Archives, HUD 310.04.5

Ragged Claws:
T.S. Eliot's Prufrock at 100
The publication in June 1915 of T.S. Eliot’s “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” was a pivotal event in modern poetry. While many critics dismissed it at the time as unskilled and obscure, Prufrock is now acknowledged as the first masterpiece of Modernism in English, as well as Eliot’s first important publication. In both its themes and technique, Prufrock broke sharply with the conventions of Romantic and Georgian poetry.

The exhibition, curated by Carey Adina Karmel, PhD candidate at the University of London, explores the genesis of the poem by way of various manuscript and typescript reproductions, as well as “exploding” the poem by providing materials illustrating Eliot’s evocative imagery, such as an authentic magic lantern. The exhibition includes multiple printings of Prufrock, from its debut in 1915 in Poetry magazine to its first independent appearance in book form in 1917, along with books from Eliot’s library that provided source material.

The exhibition’s title is a phrase from the poem: “I should have been a pair of ragged claws /
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.” It is also a metaphor for the composition of Prufrock, explains Karmel: “Eliot's meter is ragged in the period use of the term, in the way that jazz music was originally described. Line lengths throughout Prufrock are also ragged vers libre; ‘come and go’ rhymes with ‘Michelangelo’ in a bump of three single syllable words end-rhymed with a serpentine, proper noun of five syllables. Eliot's technique is such that the auditory pop is subterranean.”  

For additional information, contact Leslie Morris at Houghton Library, 617-495-2449.

Amy Lowell Room, Houghton Library



Occupied Cuba, 1898-1902:
Photographs from the Theodore Roosevelt Collection
The years between the end of the Cuban War of Independence in 1898, facilitated by United States involvement as part of the Spanish-American War, and the proclamation of the Cuban Republic in 1902, were a time of much change and transition in Cuba. After the last of the Spanish troops left Cuba in 1898, the United States took over the governance of Cuba. Occupied Cuba brings together some documentary photographs of this time gathered from Harvard’s Theodore Roosevelt Collection.

Theodore Roosevelt Gallery, Pusey Library

The exhibition is free and open to the public. Please contact the curator with any questions.


An Unquiet Harpist, Buenos Aires, Argentina, by Diana Im. First Prize for People and Best in Show.

An Unquiet Harpist, Buenos Aires, Argentina,
by Diana Im. First Prize for People & Best in Show.

Harvard College
Annual International Photo Contest

Photos taken by Harvard students who have studied, worked, interned, or done research abroad during the past year are on exhibit. For more information on the contest, see the photo contest page.

Level B, first and third floor display cases,
Lamont Library (Hours)
For details contact Lynn Sayers at 617-495-2455


1933 Goudey Baseball card no. 118 (Valentine J. (Val) Picinich, Brooklyn Dodgers)

Shostakovich, Dmitri. Nos: opera v 3 deistviakh, 10 kartinakh. Soch. 15. Predlozhenie dlia penia s fortepiano avtora. [The Nose: opera in 3 acts, 10 scenes. Op. 15. Reduction for voice and piano by the composer.] Moskva: Muzyka, 1974.

2015 Philip Hofer Prize for Collecting Books or Art
The Philip Hofer prize is awarded each year to a student at Harvard whose collection of books or works of art best exemplifies the traditions of breadth, coherence, and imagination represented by Philip Hofer, A.B. '21, L.H.D. '67, founder and first Curator of the Department of Printing and Graphic Arts in the Houghton Library and Secretary of the Fogg Art Museum. The prize, which is to encourage student interest in collecting, was established in 1987 by Melvin R. Seiden, A.B. '52, L.L.B. '55. Students competing for the prize submit an annotated list or bibliography and an essay describing the scope, contents, and goal of the collection. On exhibition are samples of this year’s first prize winning collection,  Formalists! Musical Scores of Suppressed Soviet Composers, submitted by Alexander P. Ioffreda, Harvard College, Class of 2015.

Third floor display cases, Lamont Library,
For details, contact Lynn Sayers at 617-495-2455


2015 Undergraduate Book Collectiong Prize

Garrigues, Richard, and Robert Dean.
The Birds of Costa Rica: A Field Guide.
Ithaca, NY:
Comstock Pub., 2007, page 147.

2015 Undergraduate Book Collecting Prize
Established in 1977, the Visiting Committee Prize for Undergraduate Book Collecting recognizes and encourages book collecting by undergraduates at Harvard. Students competing for the annual prize submit an annotated bibliography and an essay on their collecting efforts, the influence of mentors, the experience of searching for, organizing and caring for items, and the future direction of the collection. On display are samplings of the collections of this year's prize-winning entries, along with personal commentary.

Second and third floor display cases, Lamont Library
For details, contact Lynn Sayers at 617-495-2455


Please check back for future events.

Continuing Exhibitions

Mercator Globes
Exhibition includes Gerard Mercator's terrestrial (1541) and celestial (1551) globes that reflect new discoveries in world geography and cosmography as well as new techniques in charting, printing, and globe making. Only 22 matched pairs survive, Harvard's being the only matched pair in America.

Mercator Case, Map Gallery Hall
For details call the Map Collection at 617-495-2417